NP prepares for projects

By Kelsey Kimbler -

NEW PARIS — Susan Laux with Mote & Associates attended the New Paris council meeting on Monday, July 9, to discuss possible projects and funding.

There will be a special council meeting with the Board of Public Affairs (BPA) on Monday, July 23, to award a bid for the South Washington Street waterline project. That meeting will be held in the municipal building at 7 p.m.

Mote & Associates has been meeting with Vectren regarding East Cherry Street in the village, as they were notified once paving is complete, no street opening permits will be permitted unless an emergency occurs. Vectren has been working on East Cherry Street to prepare. This is the time for them to fix any gas lines or waterlines or such projects.

In the State’s Capital Budget Bill, New Paris was awarded $200,000 for its park, providing seed money for the project. Laux added, there is a also grant available through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) called Land and Water Conservation Fund.

According to ODNR, “The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) grant program provides up to 50 percent reimbursement assistance for state and local government subdivisions (townships, villages, cities, counties, park districts, joint recreation districts, and conservancy districts) to for the acquisition, development, and rehabilitation of recreational areas.

“Funding is issued to the state and it is at the state’s discretion how much of that funding will be made available for local government. Since the Land and Water Conservation Fund grant program became effective, the State of Ohio has received over $150 million. Over half of this funding has been used for local parks projects.”

This money could be used as match, Laux said. The application is due in November.

While it has been awarded the Capital Bill money, the village will not receive the funds until they submit an application, which Laux said, there is no rush to do.

Other project funding possibility is the Ohio Public Works Commissioner (OPWC) State Capital Improvement Program (SCIP). Once the application for this program is in, there is a wait of two years before the project is actually considered. However, if the project submitted becomes an emergency, the village can be asked to move up in the pipeline by a year.

Council brainstormed different projects they could enter into the “pipeline” for funding. It was decided the High Street Bridge would be the highest priority project, with Cardinal Hill Drive and Main Street following close behind. Laux brought a resolution for all three projects and a Waterline Distribution System project. Council had the opportunity to choose which project to put in the pipeline.

They agreed that High Street Bridge is the highest priority project at this point in time. Council made and approved a motion to submit High Street Bridge for funding with OPWC.

Council will meet for their regular August meeting on Monday, Aug. 6 at 7 p.m. in the Municipal Building.

By Kelsey Kimbler

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH